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By GreaterSport | 25 May 2021 | TAGS: Inequalities, Racism, Racial inequality, Black lives matter, Greater Manchester

Today the Active Partnership Network has launched a Racial Equality Commitment, outlining our collective commitment to being anti-racist organisations that proactively tackle racial inequalities.

One year on since the killing of George Floyd sparked protests against racism across the world, we’re taking stock of our progress in reducing racial inequalities across sport and physical activity in Greater Manchester (GM).

GreaterSport CEO Hayley Lever has reflected on the last 12 months, saying; The past year has been an important time for us to confront the realities of the barriers that still exist in society, our system and our organisation; to show leadership and take personal and collective action. The GreaterSport team, board and partners have made some significant steps together, which I am very proud of. We still have a long way to go, and a key leadership role to play, which we are all committed to.

Be Open and Responsible

In direct response to the Black Lives Matter movement, GreaterSport released our commitment to challenge ourselves to do more to address the inequalities faced by ethnically diverse communities. GreaterSport are committed to:

  • challenging the systemic inequalities that exist between communities
  • working with partners to address the under-representation of Black communities within the sport and physical activity sector
  • reducing the ethnicity gap in activity levels
  • gaining greater understanding of the needs of Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic communities

Following our public commitment, we got to work on creating an organisational action plan to outline what we will do, and how we will follow through on this commitment. The action plan has been embedded into the organisation’s Tackling Inequalities plan and aid guided by the GM Moving Pointers for Practice.

Be Strong Allies

In April 2021, alongside GM Moving partners, we released our commitment to inclusive and positive language to provide guidance and set out principles for the use of inclusive language. As we strive to engage and work with diverse audiences, it is increasingly important that our language and imagery reflects our commitment to reducing inequalities and making moving more something for everyone.

We have changed our recruitment processes to ensure our Board and team are more representative of Greater Manchester’s population. We are more targeted when promoting roles to ensure we reach more diverse networks and are more open and explicit about seeking diversity.

Create Systematic Change

We are in the middle of working on a strategy refresh for GM Moving and are listening hard to what both organisations and individuals are telling us. Key to the next chapter in the GM Moving story is how together we focus our efforts on addressing inequalities in activity that were already there, and that are growing during the pandemic. We want to ensure that the future GM Moving strategy is relevant to GM people and communities, in all their diversity, and that it goes further to tackle inequalities in Greater Manchester. 

As part of this process we held a specific event in February 2021, Tackling Racism and Racial Inequality in Sport, Physical Activity and Active Lives in Greater Manchesterto ensure the strategy is fully representative of all people and communities and also tackles racial inequalities. 

In September 2020 we hosted a conversation on The GM Moving Podcast exploring what we can do to tackle racism in sport and physical activity and enable our Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic communities in Greater Manchester to live more active lives. 

Enable Communities

As part of our commitment and action plan, we are making new and intentional relationships to build deeper and more diverse networks including:

  • Equalities Networks & Groups
  • VCSE infrastructure orgs
  • Council representatives
  • Community Groups

Develop the Workforce

As well as ensuring our processes attract a broader diversity of talent, we are also working to ensure our current team are upskilled. Providing opportunities for personal growth, development and understanding by sharing resources and designing in spaces and sessions to contribute to and progress the Tacking Inequalities Plan and workforce Race Equality sessions.

We also participated in Greater Manchester’s ‘Building Leadership for Inclusion’ programme, which included a contribution and pledge to the ‘Greater Manchester public services – commitment for change’ which will be sent to the Race Equality Panel on 1st June 2021.

Deliver Inclusively

Sport England’s Tackling Inequalities Fund (TIF) exists to help to reduce the negative impact of coronavirus and the widening of the inequalities in sport and physical activity. In Greater Manchester, we focused the distribution of funding to reach under-represented groups. To date we have supported 18 projects that target ethnic minority priority groups through TIF Round 1 & 2, representing 48.6% of the total funding.

Whilst we are proud of the progress we have made, we know there is far more still to be done. We welcome any thoughts, suggestions, comments or questions to help support and develop our ongoing work to address racial inequality within Greater Manchester and sport and physical activity; please email [email protected].

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